Pretty much every day, in pretty much every newspaper in the country, there is a story that goes something like this [taken from todays WSJ]: "Yesterday, the Dow Jones industrials fell xxx points to yyyy on new concerns about interest rates and anxiety over North Korea's missile tests." Or the Dow rose, due to "increasing optimism about prospects for peace in the Mideast." Or whatever. It's complete and utter nonsense. The market did in fact fall yesterday. But how could anyone possibly know that it was due to "concerns about interest rates," or "anxiety about North Korea's missile program"? Hundreds of thousands -- millions -- of individual trading decisions go into determining whether the market goes up or goes down on any given day. I don't get it -- I really don't. Are we really so desperate to believe that we can explain everything that we take some sort of comfort from stories like these?
Why Do They Do It?